Alexis Monville (en)

Mindsets for the Future

Leading in a Non-Linear World: Building Wellbeing, Strategic and Innovation Mindsets for the Future

Traditional linear leadership models are increasingly ineffective. Jean Gomes’s book Leading in a Non-Linear World provides a comprehensive guide to understanding and adopting new mindsets necessary for thriving in our complex environment.

Embracing Complexity and Uncertainty

Making Sense of the World

Leaders must question their assumptions and seek new perspectives in an era characterized by volatility, uncertainty, complexity, and ambiguity (VUCA). Gomes emphasizes the importance of challenging our sense of certainty and embracing the non-linear nature of today’s challenges. This mindset shift is crucial for leaders to adapt and thrive.

A Decade-Long Journey

Gomes has been exploring how our brains and bodies interpret the world for over a decade. His research delves into the interplay between physical sensations, emotions, and cognitive processes, highlighting the need for a holistic approach to leadership.

The New Science of Mindset and Self-Awareness

Understanding Mindsets

Mindsets are more than just attitudes and beliefs; they are the fundamental ways we make sense of the world. Gomes defines mindsets as the interplay between physical and emotional states, assumptions, and perceptual frames.

Physical Self-Awareness

Gomes underscores the importance of physical self-awareness, known as interoception. This involves tuning into bodily signals, which provide valuable information about our internal state and the external environment. Leaders can enhance their decision-making and emotional regulation by practicing techniques like body scans.

Emotional Granularity

Expanding our emotional vocabulary is another critical aspect. Most people use a limited set of words to describe their emotions. Leaders can better understand and articulate their feelings by developing greater emotional granularity, leading to improved self-awareness and interpersonal effectiveness.

Building Mindsets for the Future of Work and Life

A More Human Mindset

Gomes advocates for a more human mindset, emphasizing radical self-awareness and well-being. This mindset fosters a deeper connection with our physical and emotional states, enabling healthier behaviors and improved decision-making.

The Future Now Mindset

Leaders often struggle to balance short-term performance with long-term value creation. The future now mindset encourages leaders to think strategically about the future while delivering immediate results. This involves recognizing the interconnected nature of various time horizons and aligning efforts accordingly.

The Experimental Mindset

Innovation and adaptability are crucial in a non-linear world. The experimental mindset, rooted in a test-and-learn approach, allows organizations to innovate rapidly and effectively. Gomes highlights the importance of creating environments that support continuous experimentation and learning.

The Open Mindset

An open mindset values diversity, inclusivity, and collaboration. It involves seeing the potential in others and fostering an organizational culture that embraces change and continuous improvement. This mindset is essential for building flexible and adaptive teams.

Practical Applications and Conclusion

Deferred Judgment

One practical technique Gomes discusses is deferred judgment. In high-stress situations, taking a moment to calm the body’s physiological responses before reacting can prevent defensive or aggressive behaviors. This practice allows for more thoughtful and constructive responses.

Collective Mindsets

Building collective mindsets involves fostering a shared understanding and emotional connection within teams. This approach enhances collaboration and helps teams navigate complex challenges more effectively.

Continuous Learning and Adaptation

Ultimately, “Leading in a Non-Linear World” calls for embracing continuous learning and adaptation. By developing new mindsets, leaders can navigate the complexities of the modern world with greater agility and resilience.

Jean Gomes’ insights offer a robust framework for modern leadership. By understanding and embracing these principles, leaders can create resilient organizations that thrive amidst uncertainty and change. As we face unprecedented challenges, the ability to lead non-linearly will be a critical differentiator for success.


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